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I just caught this movie at the Calgary International Film Festival.
The gimmick is that the entire movie was filmed in one continuous shot;
the plot is basically about what happens when a man's new car is taken
over by a mysterious voice on the vehicle's navigation system. What
follows from there is good enough to make you forget about the gimmick
of the continuous shot, but it's not really great. For the first 15
minutes or so, I was actually more interested in trying to figure out
where the movie was taking place than what was happening to the main
Director Robert Lynn took questions after the showing at the festival and gave some interesting background about the making of the movie. They evidently couldn't film onto tape--since digital tapes max out at 63 minutes--so they taped a computer hard drive to the camera and shot it straight to disk. He also claimed that they did five different takes of the movie, one of which featured an unplanned flat tire. The voice of "Harvey" was broadcast from a trailing car into actor David Alford's bluetooth headset during the filming. However, the connection got lost about 2/3 of the way through the movie (when Alford spits out of his car window). Remarkably, Alford was somehow able to do the rest of the take (with appropriate timing and everything) from memory. The people on the streets of the city also weren't aware that a movie was being filmed; supposedly, you can see someone diving out of the way when a gun is being fired at one point.
Overall, I'd say it's a well-done attempt to realize an ambitious movie-making idea, and worth a look.
Attended "World Premiere" at Nashville Film Festival. As you know the movie is one continuous shot. Before it played the crew noted for the audience that it took 5 "takes." Dialogue was solid for the most part. The allusions to Shakespeare were ham-handed and a little over the top however. Camera-work was good although there were some white balance problems. Definitely looked like it was shot on video-tape complete with combing artifacts. IMO the film would benefit from video processing to affect a documentary style, cinema verite look. Diamond's part while performed well sounded "canned" which hurt the immersion factor more than the video artifacts. The film shown was presented in stereo. Hopefully sound problems will be addressed when it is post-processed into 5.1. Acting by Alford and Diamond was very good. Overall the film is interesting and enjoyable especially if you like the one-camera-one-take conceit.
Snuck a peek at this before it plays at the Nashville Film Festival. (Sunday at 10pm) I was intrigued by the single shot/real time gimmick and was cautious, yet hopeful, that film would live up to the gimmick. The film unfolds in one continuous 88-or-so minute shot as new Jeep owner Chris Thompson is ordered around the city by a mysterious caller threatening to kill his daughter. Much like 24 and Phone Booth, which are clearly inspirations, the gimmick is used to enhance the storytelling and not be the storyteller. Had this been more standardly shot, it may have been entertaining and suspenseful enough, but lacking the extra layer of tension provided by the continuous shot. It's like the extra cream cheese icing for your Cinnabon. Though never as complex as the marathon shots in Children of Men (and certainly not matching that films emotional weight), Adrenaline does deserve note for its well-executed, unblinking camera work. And what does the technical achievement matter (which, by the way, thank heavens for auto iris, right?) if the performance can't compete? Well, Mr. David Alford brings it. Being on camera for 99% film, he sells the regular guy in constantly escalating hell while never flinching under the pressure of the persistence of character. Major kudos. And it seems that former detective Kellerman's PI business fell apart and he's had to resort to a bit of extortion to get by. Or maybe he was just bored. Whatever the case, Reed Diamond's "Harvey" is at least as entertaining as Keifer's caller in Phone Booth, possibly more so. (Though I might be a bit biased since I'm a sucker for just about anything featuring Homicide alums.) Not quite perfect--it does drag in a few places, the ending feels selected from a list of least cliché, and there are some moments with a whiff of "I have to some time to fill before the next cue"--Adrenaline is still an engaging thriller and well worth checking out given the opportunity.
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